Early research began with our co-founder's [Tricia Powe] quest for information that would support the family she and her husband formed in 1985. Her efforts provided the foundation of our core program:
StepfamilySystems' ACES: Co-Parenting & Stepfamily Focal Points TM.
When people ask if it works, Powe responds she has been married three decades - to the same man. She has blended co-parenting mediation (Mosten Mediation, Los Angeles, 1998) skills with the insights of being a stepfamily member since birth, and nearly 15k hours of independent research, presentations and interactive groups with people from around the world. Her first presentations were given in 1990.
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Continued efforts have coined the use of two terms related to parental alienation. Published on her first website launched in 2005/6, to understand stepfamily struggles and co-parenting chaos from biological and step roles, Powe shared valuable insights about how a failed divorce or a high-conflict break up can contribute to the formation of the UNblended stepfamily. Based on her research:
"The failed divorce or incomplete, conflict-laced break-up occurs for many reasons, and most notably when goals associated with getting divorced or parting ways as a couple are not realized, leaving parties of the dissolved couple less likely to co-parent smoothly - if at all. The emotional divorce is incomplete or fails to meet expectations, leaving unsettling and ill-managed thoughts to persistently challenge peace of mind. Stress and conflict continue and may face increased intensity through resentment of shared-parenting influences such as remarriage and a sense of reduced control or influence over the children's upbringing.
Additionally, many moms and dads express their fear of loss of importance in their children's lives. Altogether, poorly managed thoughts and emotions, laced with insecurities related to past choices and future uncertainties can disrupt the post-divorce adjustment, create an unblended stepfamily and can distract parents as well as the children. This creates distracted studentship through weakened focus in classroom and homework environments, impacting the education of and student performance of innumerable children and youth. We believe the failed divorce and the unblended stepfamily are root causes of parental alienation behaviors which fuel high-conflict co-parenting, spousal and child maltreatment, academic neglect and costly, chronic litigation. "
~Tricia Powe, Co-Parenting Mediator & Stepfamily Assimilation Strategist
Our observations and self-reporting survey responses move the heart. Children deserve to feel loved by and freely feel loving toward both parents.
Current & coming projects:
1) Parental Alienation & Parental Alienation Syndrome: #FamilyLaw impact on Co-Parenting and Stepfamily Assimilation (began in fall 2009)
2) Care Capacity. It impacts how well or how poorly family members treat each other. We are looking forward to bringing you insights that matter to the quality of relationships we experience.
3) Stepmoms & the Malicious Mother / Moms & the Overstepping Stepmom
4) Dads and Stepdads
5) Grandparents - Lost in transition
6) Adult Children of Divorce
7) Minor children of Divorce - What makes my stepparent a bonus parent?
8) Stepchild Adoption stories
In 2009, after seeing myriads of petitions being circulated by parents and stepparents, we launched our self-reporting survey project.
Among many reasons for its existence was the need to move less formal, qualitative research to quantitative research.
Parents caught in the throes of high-conflict and those experiencing parental alienation behaviors are anxious to see the emotional abuse of children brought to an end.
Great strides have been made to see the legal system have use of two terms Parental Alienation / Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) free from being questionable terms and see these listed with codes in the next DSM - Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
FILL OUT THE SURVEY REQUEST Web FORM TO PARTICIPATE. THANK YOU. We will be in touch when we have an opening matching your request: